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Shipp Rights Cardinals

September 30, 2002|From Associated Press

TEMPE, Ariz. — The Arizona Cardinals were supposed to be in trouble at running back, with no experienced player behind Thomas Jones.

They have some experience now.

Marcel Shipp, who never had an NFL carry before the second game of this season, ran 10 yards for one fourth-quarter touchdown and caught a pass from Jake Plummer for another Sunday as the Cardinals (2-2) beat the New York Giants, 21-7.

"I grew up watching these guys," said Shipp, who's from Paterson, N.J., "and it just feels great to come out here and play the way I did."

Shipp, who gained 5,383 yards at Division I-AA Massachusetts but was not drafted last year, played because Thomas Jones had a sore left ankle. Shipp ran for 92 yards in 17 carries and caught five passes for 39 yards.

"There was a lot of motivation for me in the off-season, because they questioned the backup running back spot," Shipp said. "I had to prove a lot of people wrong, and I came in today and did that."

"I've got no reservations about Marcel Shipp," Cardinal Coach Dave McGinnis said. "I felt like that all along, or I wouldn't have kept him on this team last year."

Shipp sprained his left knee two plays before his touchdown run, leaving Arizona with "two gimpy backs," McGinnis said.

On their first possession, the Giants (2-2) got a six-yard touchdown run from Tiki Barber, then they were shut down by their own miscues and Arizona's young defense.

"Our defense won this game," Plummer said.

Justin Lucas intercepted Kerry Collins' ill-advised sideline pass and returned it 38 yards for the score-tying touchdown with four seconds left in the first half.

In a brief halftime television interview, Giant Coach Jim Fassel said, "I'll never be that stupid again in my lifetime."

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